Criminal Justice Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:30 pm on 30th October 2003.

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Photo of Lord Judd Lord Judd Labour 6:30 pm, 30th October 2003

My Lords, I am very grateful to my noble and learned friend for giving way. He has addressed this issue, as have others of my noble friends and, of course, I understand the feeling, concern and genuine commitment in this direction. However, while we consider the position of people who have—and know that they have—committed a crime, who have been acquitted and then subsequently find when they wake up after this Bill has been passed that they have not got away with it, what about the many people who have been acquitted in the past? Very often, the reason that they were in court was because they were vulnerable, inadequate people. What is their position when they wake up the day after this legislation has been introduced and find that something that they thought, with justice and truth, that they had put behind them is now uncertain? We must weigh that in our considerations as well.